Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Detective Comics #40 (HERE BE SPOILERS!)

To be honest, I really enjoyed this issue, though the following review isn't going to sound like it.

On the positive side, Harvey really continues to be the star of this series.  His banter with Alfred helps move us through the issue as he desperately tries to find the transmitter that Anarky is using to inspire Gotham's citizens to riot against the police.  Moreover, not surprisingly, the art also continues to be spectacular; the artists could really write a textbook on how to propel the reader through a fight scene.

However, despite the revelation that Sam Young is Anarky, the authors leave us with many more questions that answers (and not in a good way).  We learn that Alice was Young's sister and that the Mad Hatter tortured and killed her and other residents of the orphanage where she and Sam lived.  Anarky tells Batman that Jeb Lester gave Alice to the Hatter, but, honestly, it just makes no sense.  How does a guy go from running an orphanage to a Wayne Enterprises Vice President?  (He's alternately been described in this series as in charge of shipments and IT.  They're not exactly the background(s) of someone running an orphanage.)  Similarly, what role did the Hatter play at the orphanage?  We've seen him portrayed as essentially the landscape guy, but how did he go from that to a master of mind-control technology?  Moreover, Young was enraged that the Gotham City Police Department didn't do anything to save the children, leading him to inspire the riots.  But, how did they specifically fail?  I mean, yes, I totally agree that someone should've been looking into the disappearance of a bunch of orphans, but wouldn't you first lay the blame at the feet of social services before the police?

I'd also say that Batman seems somewhat unreasonably unhinged when it comes to Young.  I'm not saying that he shouldn't have stopped him, but he seems to completely discount the fact that Young seemingly suffered horrific abuse at the Hatter's hands.  Bruce calls him a "liar," a "twisted killer," and "one more lunatic to add to Gotham's collection."  Sure, Bruce is a pretty black-and-white kind of guy, but Manallato seem to go too far here in portraying him as lacking any sort of empathy.

Again, I enjoyed the issue as it happened, but, reflecting on it, it's got some obvious weaknesses that hopefully Manallato will manage to avoid in future stories.  However, it's an improvement over "Icarus," so hopefully we'll keep on improving.

** (two of five stars)

No comments:

Post a Comment